Sealants are a durable plastic coating that can be applied to protect the chewing surfaces of the permanent back teeth which grow in around this age. These new molars have deep grooves called pits and fissures. Food and bacteria build up in these narrow grooves putting the child at risk for tooth decay. Why? Even if a child brushes carefully, it is almost impossible to thoroughly clean the deep pits and valleys on these new teeth with a toothbrush. Cavities can therefore develop quickly in these pit and fissures and account for 80-90% of cavities in permanent back teeth.
The good news? Sealants can be placed into and over the pits and fissures, keeping out bacteria and sugars, thus, significantly reducing the risk of tooth decay. Research has shown that sealants reduce cavities by 86% after one year and 58% after four years. And like our fillings, our sealants never contain BPA by-products. Sealants are painless to apply and only require your child to be able to open wide so we can see, clean and dry the tooth before applying.
If you would like to learn more about whether sealants are recommended for your child, please call our office for an appointment.